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Cogs

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Everything posted by Cogs

  1. If the news is to be believed re: credit, to come out plus five quid after 4 months means he is doing better than a large minority of Britons who seem to be coming out minus a few thousand pounds over the same period having paid for accomodation and their bills. When you subtract a lot of people's liabilities, this pizza delivering chap is well ahead of them in net worth terms. Indeed, the Treasury have probably gone to "action stations" to discover how it is a whole five pounds has "slipped through the net" and nobody will be getting Rich Tea biscuits until there is an answer and a plan for snatching it back
  2. Works both ways. What happens to California, Florida etc. are of a much higher magnitude of importance, its a question of things like concentration of wealth and population. Consider the fact that California on its own is is a top world economy, consider also there are many US states (ironically the Republican ones) that are more or less permanently subsidised by the Californias and the Floridas. Its like London vs. the rest of the UK really (even though admitting it sticks in my throat a bit quite frankly). I see what you are saying but the economic "America" is a bit different from the geographical "America". In contrast you wouldn't expect somewhere known primarily for cheese or one of the rusting former industrial cities to demonstrate much of a boom or a bust really. Not that I'm saying I personally know for a fact anything is going on but like you say it is a very big place, but it is also a very, very imbalanced place, far more so than the UK.
  3. Hrm. Someone bought land, did the demolition, built houses, sold one of them, made money. I'm hacked off about HPI but I don't begrudge your friend his profit and I doubt many others here would. It would be a different case if he'd bought the 2 "eyesore" semis, painted the walls magnolia and sold them on to make a million which is more what I'd call "problem" activity. For me anyway there is a clear ethical difference between productive economic activity (such as building houses) and speculation. Even (perhaps) in a declining or at least more balanced market than we currently have productive economic activity would be and rightly should be rewarded.
  4. Of course I've seen it, its utter rubbish. A bit of "my mummy didn't love me so I abuse credit cards" with the bloke and then the woman tells them off spending so much on clothes and takes them down to Primark. Theres the comedy "can you live on 40 quid for a week" section of the show which is just a stunt really, not a serious intervention. The consequence of their action is that they got half an hour on TV, which is something hundreds of thousands of idiots queue up for. It isn't anything like hard edged enough, indeed the whole premise of the programme is that people indulge in irresponsible spending because they can't be expected to be responsible for themselves and need the advice of "experts". This is like saying people can't be expected to tie their own shoelaces. They also pick some real space cadets with like 60k on 8 credit cards and car loan which all the idiots who've pissed say 15 grand up the wall can shrug and say, well I'm not as bad as them and we are all up to our necks in debt, pass the catalogues would you... If they really want to have a programme about debt they should follow people who've been divorced because of it, ask their kids how they like living in council bedsits, that kind of thing. Its just far too fluffy and "lifestyle". Excessive debt is a genuine social evil, with harsh implications for millions in this country, it is not a trivial opportunity for a cuddle-fest.
  5. I was talking about this the other day... No, "we" aren't, speak for yourselves. I actually dislike programmes of this nature because instead of "fighting" debt as they ostensibly claim, they normalise incredibly stupid behaviour.
  6. Been trying to comment, this site is almost unusable owing to that IPS drive error thing. Anyhow, if you want a HPC this is probably excellent news and nothing to be annoyed by. Its utter stupidity and will probably be dragged up at a future date under the heading of "what were we all thinking eh?" A clear omen isn't it. The silly season story comes before a fall, look at last time, I think I remember seeing something pretty similar back then actually. [i hate the way journalists write utter tripe for years on end and then write editorials saying "what were we all thinking eh" re: everything from Madonna to MMR jabs when it was [b]just them[/b] that was thinking it in a lot of cases. Take personal credit when they guess right, imply collective blame when they aren't, no doubt at all they will claim we were "all" suckered by HPI]
  7. "dodgy home loans given to poor people in the US". Haha. They tell it straight in Oz, none of those Yank euphemisms like "sub-prime". I think we should really call them what they are as well and stop hiding behind the VI terminology.
  8. This is an interesting point, given the typical NIMBY is the first person to, fuelled by the Daily Mail, start ranting about social cohesion and how people have no respect etc etc etc, ad nauseum. They don't seem to see the contradiction between their own behaviour and society. Their NIMBYism extends beyond property alone, its an entire state of mind. They think something should be done, just not by them. I believe this is something that reached its apex in the 80s where the Conservatives mirrored the desires of this demographic that they could have their cake and eat it: be incredibly selfish (in an Ayn Rand-lite sense) and still live in a "warm beer and cricket" Arcadia of family values and good neighbours. Because presumably everyone else would still be prepared to make the sacrifices and compromises need to create this cohesive society whilst Mr and Mrs Nimby stuck at being incredibly selfish. Obviously it doesn't add up, but that is the central condiction at the heart of NIMBYism.
  9. Seems consistent to me, posh cars, flash holidays...and the house worth half a million or more. Good old HPI eh. In a few years time that is what being filthy rich will look like.
  10. I'm with, I think it is, GOM, the second half of this year will be about inconsistency and mixed messages. Lots to argue about, indeed stories on the same page of the same newspaper might contradict each other. A crash may even begin but it will be so localised that it will hard to spot, unfashionable properties in unfashionable postcodes and won't show up anywhere really aside from the odd griping "human interest" article in the papers. I think more typically houses will begin take longer to sell although this won't be reflected directly in prices as most people are so used to the distorted market they will stick on price (10k here or there to no effect) and then wonder why 6 months later nothing has happened. MEW obviously forces people to stick to some extent, so I think falling numbers are years away. This is the country outside London, god only knows what will happen there. Obviously if it isn't happening in London then the media won't believe it is really happening elsewhere so no crash until London falls, which may never happen (as usual, if you are up to your neck in water in the north its not a big deal, if as the other year it happens to be a bit sunny in London its a national disaster, not the fault of Londoners but the fault of the media to be clear about this). Sorry if that looks like a "fudged" prediction but I genuinely believe the next six months will be ambivalent on housing.
  11. In the case of The Times I think their website doesn't work properly. I think its incompetence not censorship. The day it launched hardly anything worked on it and then a little while later is collapsed completely. I gave them very direct feedback the day it launched but for whatever reason they haven't fixed anything I (and I'm sure lots of other people) pointed out. Notice how, for example, you can't click on a link to an opinion article from the front page, you have to click through to "have your say" on an article then close that box down and scroll up to read the damn article. It seems they adjusted their old site to shoe-horn more advertising in, it wasn't to improve reader experience anyway.
  12. If you render yourself irrelevant don't be surprised if other people treat you as such. I vote for the least evil candidate I can find. Lately I've been trying to do it on the basis of the person rather than the party. YMMV. [Edit: In other words, what I think people have to wake up to is tactical voting]
  13. For the Nth time, the statistics are very clear. The boomers voted them in all three times. They are by far the overwhelming majority of active voters. A "clueless generation"? If you mean people younger than boomers, well they didn't vote in significant numbers for anything or anybody. That is in itself quite "clueless" behaviour in my view but that is neither here nor there.
  14. Exact opposite actually. 550-575 bracket now all down to 500-525 a month. 1 bed flats this is, 2 beds are looking about the same as they did last year and the year before. Then again, this is South Brum and you may remember one of the larger letting agents telling the Observer a few weeks ago that the market was utterly flooded (metaphorically speaking in this case) with rental property as a result of sellers being "unable to exit the market" (code for clinging onto silly valuations and refusing to sell for less, then again maybe they are MEWed to the point they have no choice). Nice time in the rental market to make a sneaky upgrade from the terrace to the semi, from the 2-bed to the terrace etc (the term "property ladder" springs to mind) and so the increasingly over-supplied 1-bed flat is suffering.
  15. Keep your deposit in your pocket, 30 years, 600, 700 quid a month (or inflation adjusted version of it) saved away by renting. Not unrealistic to expect to retire with the equivalent of a million pounds in your back pocket. I wonder what a house will be worth in 30 years? There are many ways to skin a cat.
  16. They aren't out of touch, they know exactly what is going on. I shall now put my tin foil hat on and suggest we'll be hearing more of this from now on. This stuff isn't really for the ears of the FTB its for the fat, smug Daily Mail reading boomer types to consume. There isn't a problem, its always been 'ard, young folk today don't want to save (iPods etc), it was a struggle in our day and you didn't hear us complaining etc etc. This is entirely what the VIs want as many people as possible to continue to think. Whining FTBers aren't an issue for them, a national housing crisis would be even if they want to play "I'm alright Jack" most people are selfish but not entirely stupid. The Stamp Duty issue is a similar thing IMHO, its a debating tactic to keep discussing a sum of 1500 quid like it was the root of the problem.
  17. Having had a brief taste of the "rock and roll", I'd suggest what happened is they promoted the posts via the local job centre. Everyone is qualified to make coffee thus everyone on the books of the local job centres was forced to apply for it under pain of losing benefits. Given everyone here earns at least the average national wage of 70k + bonuses and lives in London, the Centre of the Universe Where The Streets Are Paved With Gold, you might need to get the video of Trainspotting out to jog your memory of this phenomenon. Another thing might be that for reasons that escape me at the present time, the role of "Barrista" seems to have a bit more cachet than "waitress in a cafe".
  18. Depressingly, she is basically the constantly whining, mad as a bag of stoats voice of middle-aged middle England. You know, the surprisingly bloody noisy "silent majority".
  19. I agree with your assessment Tuffers. Here is what I said about this issue the last time it came up (a bit of lazy cut and paste rather than retype it all) This is the sort of thing Brown [in idealist mode if not in the more cynical reality] got into Labour politics to do, to save people from social ills, and bad housing/homelessness is about as classic at it gets. This is what he imagined himself doing if he became Prime Minister and that is what he is bloody well going to do I think.
  20. My God. Whether Schiff is entirely right or not, the degree of "imperial delusion" some those guys are expressing would have embarassed the citizens of the Roman Empire, much less anyone in the modern world. I will admit to not knowing a lot about economic indicators but I know unselfconscious arrogance and detachment from reality when I see it, it doesn't matter much if they are talking about economics or who is going to the Premiership next year, deeply unhealthy. I've noticed old Peter is getting more and more angry on these shows and I can see why. He needs to stop interrupting all the time although in fairness to him the "quick fire" formats don't help someone who is trying to make a macro economic argument that relates daily data to larger developments.
  21. I was thinking about this after the guy from the landlords association used the argument that BTL was only a small proportion of the market on R4's "Moneybox". I get a little confused by what they mean by 10% of the "market", do they really mean 10% of the market or 10% of residential property? Because if you accept that first prices in the market are determined primarily by active participants in the market (people sitting tight do limit supply though) and second not every house in the country is for sale every year, 10% of properties actually means they have a massive presence within the "active" market, which would agree with a lot of people's experience of being repeatedly outbid property after property by the BTL fraternity.
  22. Gosh, the leader of the Labour party is thinking about when the next General Election will be held and the central office have sent out information to the consituency parties mentioning "on message" things to say about the leader of the Labour party and the presumptive candidate at the next general election. Utterly shocking! Etc etc. Sarcasm off. How on earth did you think these things work that this strikes you as worthy of comment? I remember seeing the same handout about John Smith back in the day when I was interested in such things. I'm sure there is a similar document regarding Cameron in circulation, probably several as these things evolve. There will certainly be what amount to volumes re: Tony Blair making their way to the shredder as we speak, they rejig the stuff from time to time to take into account recent trends and events. The suggestion that "Blair didn't sink this low" is laughable, he has practically bankrupted the Labour party moving their PR operation up several notches to become more efficient in exactly this sort of thing after the American model. The pollsters and the focus group people will have been out, identified strengths and weaknesses, perceptions of risks and opportunities and come back with a list of words that they want to make their message about Gordon Brown. MPs are being asked to use that form of words so that they stay coherent and "on message", disparate random comments won't add up to much, repetition and consistency is important in forming opinion within the electorate. This is just passing the news on. It turns out many of our resident "cynics" are somewhat credulous if this comes as any surprise!
  23. Gosh, can you imagine that? Maybe they should send the EAs a box of chocolates or something and so persuade people in effect running a shop to do the great honour of selling them something... How on earth does one wind up with this mentality? Pathetic.
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